Colorado’s Gone Crazy! Drug Courses Recommended!

by Mike Miller August 7, 2014

Unless you live in a cave I am sure you are aware that the state of Colorado has legalized marijuana for recreational purposes. It is almost as easy to acquire as alcohol. The state is going crazy for pot.

In addition to city and state tax revenues, advertising profits are surging. The Denver County Fair recently announced that the marijuana industry will be allowed to participate and guess what happened?

There is going to be a “Pot Pavilion” and sponsors are lining up and bidding up space. Originally, the “Pot Pavilion” would be located on half of the third floor at the National Western Complex.

There will be pot-brownie judging as well as stands for pipes, vaporizers and rolling papers. Of course there will be pot-growing competitions too. There will be no actual cannabis on-site as the competitions will take place off-site and awards will be given at the fair.

OpenVape, a maker of vapor pens is paying $10,000 for a major sponsorship, and edibles manufacturer Medically Correct is plunking down $5K.

Get this, there will even be a joint-rolling competition for fastest and tightest joint rolled. Oregano will be used in place of marijuana.

If the frenzy and hype around marijuana was not strong enough, the poster for the Pot Pavilion – an image of a cherry pie with a crust cutout resembling a marijuana leaf is outselling the fair’s main poster by more than tenfold.

How do you feel about this? Would you have any reservations about taking your child to the fair?

Healthcare Workers Urged to Take an Employee Drug Class

by Mike Miller August 2, 2014

This is the third in a series of blogs looking at the issue of drug use and abuse by our healthcare providers. I, for one, am terrified by the notion that my surgeon may be high. What are your thoughts on the issue?

Despite the potentially devastating consequences, prescription drug abuse seems to be a difficult topic for the healthcare community to address. Given the fact that many nurses and other healthcare providers are addicted to prescription medication, why do you think they do not seek help for their problem? Obviously, the answer is that they fear for their livelihood. Fear of losing their jobs, licenses, and livelihoods are among the barriers to medical staff getting help for their addictions. As reported in www.healthleadersmedia.com.

Another major factor is that addiction causes chemical and physical changes in the brain that cause addicts to believe they are in control.

The scary part is that most of those healthcare providers abusing drugs are not even brought to a hearing for their drug abuse. A recent study found that disciplinary action for drug abuse by healthcare providers, such as suspension of a license to practice, is rare and often doesn't occur until a practitioner has committed multiple transgressions.

Although random drug testing is routine in the airline and other industries, drug testing for healthcare workers isn't a common practice. However, there is a renewed call for drug testing among healthcare workers.

What are your thoughts on this topic? Here at the blog for onlinedrugclass.com we are committed to examining the problem and trying to affect change.

Nurses Stealing Pain Meds Need Drug and Anti-Theft Courses

by Mike Miller July 28, 2014

Are you frightened of an upcoming hospital visit or surgery? While I would like to say those fears are ill-founded, you may have good reason to fear. As crazy as it sounds, the fact is that many healthcare professionals may be performing their jobs under the influence of a controlled substance. There's been a steady stream of news lately about nurses charged with stealing pain meds. In later parts of this series we will look at a theft from a labor and delivery unit and this one from a nursing home.

It has been speculated that use of prescription medications is higher for nurses than for others. Why do you think that is? A possibility is that they have easy access to the medications. As reported in www.healthleadersmedia.com.

And when healthcare providers abuse drugs, they're not just harming themselves; they're also potentially harming their patients. From caring for patients while impaired, to stealing medications meant for patients, to actually infecting patients with using dirty syringes, the safety ramifications of prescription drug abuse among healthcare workers are far-reaching.

Do you know a nurse or other healthcare professional that uses or abuses prescription medication? If so, I would like to hear from you, anonymously of course, as to what you think about this. Here at the blog for onlinedrugclass.com we are committed to not only exposing potentially dangerous situation, but more importantly to help those who suffer from the ravages of addiction.

Nurses at Risk for Drug Addiction

by Mike Miller July 23, 2014

Perhaps you have been reading about the huge problem with drug use and abuse among healthcare professionals. There's been a rash of headlines involving healthcare workers abusing—and sometimes overdosing and dying from—prescription drugs. In December, a cardiovascular ICU nurse was found dead in the bathroom of a University of Michigan hospital. Months later, The Ann Arbor News reported that she died from an overdose of the opiate Fentanyl and the benzodiazepine Midazolam, two sedatives that are used for surgical patients.

Prescription painkiller abuse is a huge and growing problem in the United States. The problem is so prevalent in our culture that even the title character played by Edie Falco on the Showtime series Nurse Jackie, who works at a New York City hospital, is an addict. As reported in www.healthleadersmedia.com.

Drug overdose rates have more than tripled since 1990. More than 36,000 people died from drug overdoses in 2008, and most of these deaths were caused by prescription drugs. And prescription painkillers specifically were involved in 14,800 overdose deaths in 2008, more than cocaine and heroin combined.

Nurses and other healthcare providers are not immune to addiction, as a scan of recent headlines reveals.

This is the first in a series of blogs looking at the problem of drug use and abuse among our healthcare professionals. If you have any comments, I would appreciate your input here at the blog for onlinedrugclass.com.

Onlinedrugclass.com Teaches About the Dangers of Prescription Meds

by Mike Miller July 18, 2014

If by this point you are unaware of the horrific problem with addiction to prescription pain medication you are deaf, dumb and blind. At onlinedrugclass.com we look to educate people as to the dangers of all types of drugs. We do this by giving out facts and support those facts with real-life examples.

Following are the ABCs of prescription medication abuse. As reported in beta.dosomething.org.

Definition

Prescription drug abuse is taking the drug as it was not intended to be taken. This includes taking a drug without a prescription, taking someone else's prescription, or taking a drug to experience a “high” or other effects the drugs is not meant for.

Most Commonly Abused Drugs

Painkillers such as OxyContin or Vicodin, stimulants such as Adderall or Concerta, and depressants such as Xanax or Valium are the most commonly abused prescription drugs.

Danger

Abusing prescription drugs is very dangerous. Any drug has side effects that doctors carefully explain to patients before prescribing them. Not knowing the details of side effects of medications before taking them is hazardous to health.

Many abusers mix prescription drugs with alcohol or other drugs, which makes them even more dangerous.

College Statistics

About 2 in 3 college students are offered prescription drugs by their senior year. Around 1/3 of college students will abuse prescription drugs during their college career. Why do you think college students would use and abuse prescription medication?

The top reasons college students abuse prescription drugs are, academic pressures, maintaining focus with late-night study sessions, and dieting purposes.

The average age when prescription drug abuse starts is around 21. So if abusers are in college, they are either juniors or seniors.

Who are the Dealers?

Did you know that the majority of people abusing prescription drugs in college are supplied by a friend with a prescription?

Obtaining the drugs usually are not that difficult. Doctors seem all too-willing to offer a prescription if a patient describes the proper symptoms. Studies have shown that it’s easy for abusers to get prescriptions for unneeded drugs. With research, people can get a false positive diagnosis for things such as ADHD, which is treated with prescription stimulants.

I hope you found this information helpful. If so, pass it along to a friend and become a regular reader of the blog here at onlinedrugclass.com.

Another Celebrity Tragedy -- Drug Education is Critical

by Mike Miller July 13, 2014

Death due to drug use is always tragic. World-famous rocker and Bain-Aid founder Bob Geldof knows the pain one suffers when a life is cut all-too-short due to a drug overdose. Geldof’s beautiful 25-year-old daughter, Peaches died after overdosing on heroin last month.

Peaches died in her family home last month while alone with one of her two young sons. Her husband, musician Thomas Cohen, found her body in a spare bedroom in their home. A post-mortem examination failed to establish the cause of her death but forensic tests found heroin in the 25-year-old's system. As reported in celebrity.yahoo.com.

Her death is especially tragic as it brought back memories of that of her mother, television presenter Paula Yates, who died of a heroin overdose aged 41 in 2000 while alone with her youngest daughter, Tiger Lily, then aged four.

Peaches Geldof, a media and fashion personality and the mother of two young boys, was the second of Irish musician and campaigner Bob Geldof and Yates's three daughters.

Cohen had been staying the weekend at his parents' house in southeast London with the couple's sons and his father dropped their youngest boy, one-year-old Phaedra, back with Peaches late on Sunday afternoon.

Cohen became concerned when he could not contact his wife the next morning and went to their house with his mother and their other son, two-year-old Astala. He found Geldof slumped across a bed and police said it was obvious to him that she was dead. He quickly located Phaedra and called the emergency services.

The Geldof family has suffered tremendously over the years. Bob is a great man and a humanitarian. I would like to see him use his celebrity to try and keep this tragedy from happening to others.

Tori Spelling and Husband Need Drug Class and Marriage Counseling

by Mike Miller July 8, 2014

There are so thousands of people who wish they could make it in Hollywood. So many hope to be in the spotlight, to be stars, to be rich and famous. Tori Spelling, daughter of billionaire TV producer Aaron Spelling has had it all. Now, like many other Hollywood stars, she also finds herself with a drug problem.

Can it be possible that the daughter of TV mogul Aaron Spelling is too broke to divorce her cheating husband, Dean? Apparently she is and has turned to drug use and anorexia to get herself through these difficult times. There is speculation that the actress is suffering from drug abuse. As reported in www.classicalite.com.

One source who spoke with the publication claims that Tori has become addicted to pain killers. One “close” friend claims to have seen huge bottles of Vicodin and Oxycodone while visiting her. She has also been spotted popping Vicodin with wine-which you shouldn't do.

Aside from this "source" sounding like a real downer, there have been more troubling reports about Tori recently. Last week it was revealed that she was seeking treatment for an eating disorder, as she dropped to a reported 92 lbs.

Is this just another sad Hollywood tale of young, rich stars using and abusing drugs? It would not be so sad except there are children involved. I could care less whether Spelling stays married, but she needs to take a drug class and get clean for herself and her children.

Billy Joel Discusses Personal History with Drugs

by Mike Miller July 3, 2014

Sing us a song Piano Man. Sing to us. The Piano Man, Billy Joel, has gone public with his experiences with drug use, abuse and addiction. He could have wound up dead in a bathroom, like fellow New Yorker Philip Seymour Hoffman.

Billy Joel opened up about his past drug use is an interview with Shock Jock Howard Stern. He says that heroin scared him. As reported in www.tv3.ie.

The 64-year-old star revealed his past drug use in a new interview with Stern. The candid one-on-one sit down was in front of 150 people in a New York City town hall setting, where Billy discussed his career, family and childhood.

The Piano Man singer's heroin experience was the inspiration behind the song Scandinavian Skies from his 1982 album The Nylon Curtain, with the star admitting the drug "scared" him.

In addition, Billy revealed that he almost formed a “super group” with fellow chart toppers Sting, Don Henley and a guitarist.

As well as discussing his addiction issues and his experiences with heroin, Joel also mentioned that he really liked being part of a band and might be open to a “super group” sometime in the future.

Like many musicians, Joel has battled alcohol and drug issues throughout his career. Now, in his seventh decade of life, it appears Joel not only has overcome his issues, but is willing to discuss them in an effort to highlight how easy it is to become an addict.

I would like to see more stars open up and attempt to help others from ever trying such heinous and addictive drugs as heroin.

Can Drug Education Classes Replace Government Dropping the Ball?

by Mike Miller June 28, 2014

This is the fourth in a series of blogs here at onlinedrugclass.com looking at the role of drug prevention played by the US Government.

The availability and precision of accurate statistics can be hard to come by. In 2010, NSDUH reported just 60,000 daily or near daily heroin users in American; the number, according to the RAND Corporation (a nonprofit research organization that improves policy through research), was closer to 1 million. Month-to-month reports exposed an even more alarming inconsistency. In 2010, NSDUH estimated roughly 239,000 monthly heroin users; the RAND Corporation counted 1.5 million. Who is correct? As reported in www.thedailybeast.com.

Recently the government cut funding for one of its best sources of research – the Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring survey (ADAM),

ADAM hit its peak in the 2000s, surveying arrestees in 35 counties and inspiring international survey of the same kind. But as the economy suffered, ADAM did too. Decreasing to ten counties, then ultimately, five. After disappearing for two years from 2004-2006, The Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) rounded up the funding needed to resurrect it. But this year, amid severe budget cuts in Washington; it once again went to the chopping block.

This time, no one could save it.

I think it’s a really bad thing that ADAM is dying. Our knowledge about drug abuse, as opposed to casual drug consumption, disappears. Drug abusers end up in prison so they don’t make the survey. Essentially, we lose the ability to know what’s happening in the group of people using the most drugs.

I hope the government reinstitutes ADAM as well as provides more funding for both drug classes and treatment.

Drug Classes Educate on THC Concentrate

by Mike Miller June 23, 2014

Coloradians are learning there is more to legalizing marijuana than just a simple statement by the voters. Regulating the industry is taking up hundreds of hours of legislator’s time and costing taxpayers a wad of money. Fortunately for Colorado residents the tax revenue generated by the sale of legal weed so far, outweighs the administrative costs.

One of the issues currently facing administrators is marijuana concentrate and the potency of edibles sold.

When people buy marijuana from a store in Colorado the amount of weed they walk out with is easy to measure – just measure it on a triple-balance scale. This is not the case when they buy a brownie or cookie.

Did you know that an ounce of marijuana concentrate has 10 times the THC as an ounce of green weed? An ounce of weed could last a medical marijuana user 1-2 months whereas an ounce of hash oil concentrate could last the same user as much as a year.

Colorado still needs to figure out how much marijuana concentrate should be allowed to be purchased on any given visit. The state of Washington (the only other state in the US to have legal marijuana) allows a person to purchase less than an ounce of hash oil, 16 ounces of edibles and 72 ounces of marijuana-infused beverages.

We will continue to follow Colorado and Washington’s attempts to deal with marijuana in their respective states. Hopefully, a good portion of the tax revenues will be used for drug classes. What do you think?